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Steven Turner - Gulf War

Master Sergeant Steven Turner served in the Marine Corps from June 1981 through June 2001, working primarily in communications and intelligence fields. While assigned to the 1st Marine Division at Camp Pendleton, California in the early 1990s ,he deployed with the division to Saudi Arabia for the Gulf War in 1990-91. He also served in Somalia for Operation Restore Hope from December 1992 to April 1993, departing shortly before the situation became violence in Somalia. Turner worked in the Marine Corps' Recruiting Command from 1994 to 1997, being stationed in Iowa. While on active duty, Turner also served tours of duty in Adak, Alaska, in Hawaii and in South Korea.

Interview Links

Feature Excerpt

Kuwaitis Waving Flags

Abstract

Interview Session 1 - Audio

Early life and early Marine Corps career through 1989 and tour in Korea

Interview Session 2 - Audio

Gulf War experiences with the 1st Marine Division in 1990-1991

Interview Session 3 - Audio

Service in Somalia, Recruiting Command in Iowa, and later service


Photos

Caption:
James Todd, Paula Marie, Steven, Teresa Marie and Russell Curtis Turner are sitting on the family’s living room couch in South Shores in Decatur for this photo in mid-1964.

Where:
Decatur, Illinois

When:
Mid-1964

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
Brothers Curtis and Steven Turner had this picture taken in the South Shores subdivision of Decatur before heading to church in the spring of 1966.

Where:
Decatur, Illinois

When:
Spring 1966

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
Steven Turner and Michele Walker were married on September 17, 1983 at the Christian Church of Disciples in Decatur, Illinois.

Where:
Christian Church of Disciples in Decatur, Illinois

When:
September 17, 1983

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
Steven Turner’s Marine Corps Recruit Depot graduation photo was taken at MCRD San Diego in September 1981.

Where:
San Diego, California

When:
September 1981

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
PFC Turner in Pensacola, Florida following boot camp. He was attending the initial Morse code training in early 1982.

Where:
Pensacola, Florida

When:
Early 1982

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
Turner received his promotion to corporal while stationed in Adak, Alaska in 1982.

Where:
Adak, Alaska

When:
1982

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
Steve enjoys some down time in 1982 while stationed at Adak, Alaska, part of the Aleutian Islands.

Where:
Adak, Alaska

When:
1982

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
Paul, Steven and Michele in 1985 at Steven’s first reenlistment in the Marine Corps while they were stationed in Hawaii.

Where:
Hawaii

When:
1985

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
Steven, on the far left, with his Signals Collection Team members while they were stationed near the Demilitarized Zone in South Korea in 1985.

Where:
South Korea

When:
1985

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
Steven played on his unit’s baseball team while stationed at Camp Humphreys, Republic of Korea in July 1987.

Where:
Camp Humphreys, South Korea

When:
July 1987

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
Steven’s promotion to Staff Sergeant occurred while stationed at Camp Humphreys, South Korea in December 1987. First Lieutenant Keith Pierce, on the right, participates in the ceremony.

Where:
Camp Humphreys, South Korea

When:
December 1987

Ownership:
This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption:
Michele and Steven attended a Marine Corps ball in 1989 at the Camp Pendleton Officer’s Club, California.

Where:
Camp Pendleton, California

When:
1989 

Ownership:
This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption:
Steven Turner has his photo taken in the tent that served as his quarters in October 1990. The troops were expected to keep in shape while they waited for the war to begin.

Where:
Unknown

When:
October 1990

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
Steven enjoyed some rare down time while serving in Saudi Arabia during Operation Desert Shield in October 1990.

Where:
Saudi Arabia

When:
October 1990

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
SSG Turner in the Saudi Arabia desert in October 1990 while waiting for the war to begin. Since his section was short-handed, he worked very long hours.

Where:
Saudi Arabia

When:
October 1990

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
On Thanksgiving Day, 1990 President George and Mrs. Bush were in theater to visit the troops. General Boomer is on the left with First Lady Barbara Bush and Steven. 

Where:
Baghdad, Iraq

When:
Thanksgiving Day, 1990

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
Staff Sergeant Turner finds a moment to relax under his section’s camouflage net in Saudi Arabia in December 1990, during the lead-up to the war. 

Where:
Saudi Arabia

When:
December 1990

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
This is the photo of Staff Sergeant Turner used for his promotion board packet. The photo was taken while he was in Saudi Arabia for Operation Desert Shield in December 1990.

Where:
Saudi Arabia

When:
December 1990

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
Steven received this letter from his six year old son Paul while he was serving in Saudi Arabia in late 1990. The extended separation was tough for the entire family.

Where:
Saudi Arabia

When:
Late 1990

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
Steven, with cigar in his mouth, rides with his section mates while his unit crossed the border into Kuwait in February 1991. Operation Desert Shield became Operation Desert Storm when the war began.

Where:
Kuwait

When:
February 1991

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
Charlton Heston visited the Marines serving at the embassy in Mogadishu in December 1992. Steven is on the left in the photo. Heston had accompanied President Bush to Mogadishu.

Where:
Mogadishu

When:
December 1992

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
SSG Turner kneels next to a sign inside the embassy compound in Mogadishu, Somalia. The Marines found a dead baby girl in the compound when they first arrived, and buried the body where she lay in December 1992. The sign reads “Here lies unknown baby. Rest in peace.” 

Where:
Mogadishu, Somalia

When:
December 1992

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo


Caption:
Turner was promoted to Gunnery Sergeant on January 1, 1993 in Mogadishu. Lieutenant General Johnston and an aide pinned on the new rank.

Where:
Mogadishu

When:
January 1, 1993

Ownership:
This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption:
While on convoy driving through Somalia, the Marines would often drop off five gallon water cans to Somalis who looked to be in need. Circa January 1993. 

Where:
Somalia

When:
January 1993

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
The class graduation photo for the Advanced Non-Commissioned Officers Academy in December 1993 at Marine Corps Air Station El Toro, California. Steven is in the front row, third from the right.

Where:
El Toro, California

When:
December 1993

Ownership:
This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption:
Master Sergeant Turner graduated from Recruiter School at MCRD San Diego in April 1994. He is in the first row, third from the right.

Where:
San Diego, California

When:
April 1994

Ownership:
This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption:
MSG Turner was proud to display this autographed photo of R. Lee Ermey in his Cedar Rapids recruiting office during the mid-1990s.  He often requested autographed photos he could use to decorate the office.

Where:
Cedar Rapids, Iowa

When:
Mid-1990s

Ownership:
May be restricted. Patrons desiring to use this photograph should contact the ALPL Audio-Visual Curator.

Caption:
Turner met R. Lee Ermey, who became famous for playing a Marine drill sergeant in Full Metal Jacket, while Turner was stationed at Camp Pendleton, California.

Where:
Camp Pendleton, California

When:
Mid-1990s

Ownership:
May be restricted. Patrons desiring to use this photograph should contact the ALPL Audio-Visual Curator.

Caption:
Michele and Steven with their son Paul Steven on the day he was promoted to Chief (E-7) in the Navy in 2019. Paul was a technician for the nuclear reactor on a submarine at the time.   

Where:
Unknown

When:
2019

Ownership:
Narrator’s photo

Caption:
The recruiters who worked in Turner’s region took the opportunity for a group photo while attending a meeting at the Rock Island Arsenal. The arsenal is located on an island in the middle of the Mississippi River. Steven is in the back row, fifth from the right.

Where:
Arsenal Island, Illinois

When:
Unknown

Ownership:
This image is considered to be in the public domain.



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